Florida International U

Butch Davis' second season leading FIU Panthers football will begin under the lights

FIU head coach Butch Davis talks to players on the field during a spring football game at FIU's stadium on April 7, 2017.
FIU head coach Butch Davis talks to players on the field during a spring football game at FIU's stadium on April 7, 2017. adiaz@miamiherald.com

FIU football's season opener will feature a familiar opponent and a familiar kickoff time.

For the third time in four years, the Panthers will face Big Ten opponent Indiana. The Sept. 1 game is set to kick off at 7 p.m., marking the fifth consecutive year that FIU's season opener will take place at night. The game at Riccardo Silva Stadium will be televised by CBS Sports Network.

FIU is 0-2 all time against Indiana, losing 34-13 at home in 2016 and 36-22 on the road in 2015.

FIU is looking to start Butch Davis' second year on a strong note after a successful inaugural season. Davis led FIU to an 8-5 record in 2017 and the program's third overall bowl appearance and first since joining Conference USA in 2013.

The biggest chance to make a statement, though, will come on Sept. 22 when FIU faces the Miami Hurricanes, a team Davis led from 1995 to 2000 and laid the foundation for its 2001 national championship-winning season.

The matchup with Miami, which went 10-3 and appeared in the Orange Bowl last season, is the first meeting between the schools since 2007 and just the third time overall. The 2006 matchup — a 35-0 Hurricanes win — featured a benches-clearing brawl at the Orange Bowl that resulted in 31 suspensions between the teams.

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